CEBU CITY -- The National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) is set to improve the monument of the legendary Filipino hero Datu Lapulapu in line with the upcoming 500th year commemoration of the Battle of Mactan in April 2021.
NHCP chairman Dr. Rene Escalante said the commission has already allocated P100 million for the improvement of the monument now enclosed in a park in Barangay Punta Engaño.
Escalante also dispelled earlier reports that the statue of Lapulapu will be replaced, adding that that President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the enhancement of this tourist site.
He explained that they will just enshrine the statue of the Mactan chieftain, polish the details, and place some art works at the base of the monument.
The new design must also ensure that the shrine can be seen from afar so passersby can get a glimpse of it.
Escalante said that will entail the demolition and relocation of the stores and other structures that are covering the shrine.
The bulk of work will commence early next year.
Mayor Junard Chan said that despite the limited time, the local government unit is willing to cooperate and assist in the relocation.
The current monument is a 20-meter high bronze statue of Lapulapu who is shown standing guard, holding a curved kampilan and shield.
Lapulapu became a symbol of national fervor after bravely fighting the Spanish conquerors led by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.